Tuesday 20 November 2012

It's All About 'NA' : The Rise and Rise of 'New Adult' Fiction.

So. New Adult Fiction. You've heard of it, right?  If not, where have you been?  New Adult Fiction has set the Self-Publishing world ablaze over the last year or so, and now that traditional publishers are starting to take notice, it looks like NA is here to stay. 

It's important to note that New Adult fiction (a.k.a Mature YA, a.k.a Crossover fiction) isn't a new phenomenon, but it is a catchy 'buzz' term, making it a marketers dream. Also, the numbers don't lie.  People are reading New Adult fiction and they are reading it in droves.  

What is New Adult Fiction?

New Adult fiction often, but not always, takes place in a college setting and deals with characters who are in their late teens (18+) or early twenties.

 NA  focus on the learning curve that occurs in your late teens and early twenties after you've moved out of home and are free of parental rules and regulations.  New Adult fiction is all about characters who are finding their feet in a new world, making up their own rules, breaking those rules, and learning from their mistakes.

These books fiction are generally heavy on romance and typically steamier than YA - sex scenes do not fade to black -  but not as steamy as Adult romance where you get to read all the gory details!

I've read a couple of New Adult books over the last few months, and while I've enjoyed the majority of them, I have noticed that many of them focus on a similar theme: good girl meets bad boy - drama ensues - girl finds out that boy is not such a bad guy after all - he's changed, she's changed and they've both found out a whole lot about life in the process.

That said, I love bad boys, so this isn't a huge complaint, just an observation!

Want some NA reading recommendations?

So, we all know Beautiful Disaster by Jennifer McGuire, Slammed by Colleen Hoover, The Vincent Boys by Abbi Glines,  and Easy by Tammara Webber, (a.k.a The NA big hitters!) but here are some other NA titles for you to consider:

Eighteen year old Harper has grown up under her career Marine of a father's thumb. Ready to live life her own way and experience things she's only ever heard of from the jarheads in her father's unit; she's on her way to college at San Diego State University.

Thanks to her new roommate, Harper is introduced to a world of parties, gorgeous guys, family and emotions. Some she wasn't expecting yet, and others she never knew she was missing.

She finds herself being torn in two as she quickly falls in love with her boyfriend Brandon, and her roommate's brother Chase. Covered in tattoos, known for fighting in the Underground and ridiculously muscled...they're exactly what she was always warned to stay away from, but just what she needs. Despite their dangerous looks and histories, both adore and would do anything for Harper, including stepping back if it means she's happy.

Her first year away is turning out to be near perfect, but one weekend of giving in to heated passion will change everything.


Taking Chances by Molly McAdams is a wild roller-coaster of a ride and a huge favourite of mine.  Originally Self-Published, Molly has now signed to Harper Collins.  Her next book From Ashes is set for release in December. Can't wait! 

Read my review of: Taking Chances


Bliss Edwards is about to graduate from college and still has hers. Sick of being the only virgin among her friends, she decides the best way to deal with the problem is to lose it as quickly and simply as possible-- a one-night stand. But her plan turns out to be anything but simple when she freaks out and leaves a gorgeous guy alone and naked in her bed with an excuse that no one with half-a-brain would ever believe. And as if if that weren't embarrassing enough, when she arrives for her first class of her last college semester, she recognizes her new theatre professor. She'd left him naked in her bed about 8 hours earlier.


A quick, fun, and sexy read, Cora Carmack's Losing It has also been snapped up by Harper Collins.  You can read my review on Thursday!


Ella and Micha have been best friends since they were kids. But one tragic night shatters their friendship and their lives forever.

Ella used to be a rule-breaker with fiery attitude who wore her heart on her sleeve. But she left everything behind when she went to college and transformed into someone that follows the rules, keeps everything together, and hides all her problems. But now it's summer break and she has nowhere else to go but home.

Ella fears everything she worked so hard to bury might resurface, especially with Micha living right next door. If Micha tries to tempt the old her back, she knows that it will be hard to resist.

Micha is sexy, smart, confident, and can get under Ella’s skin like no one else can. He knows everything about her, including her darkest secrets. And he’s determined to bring his best friend, and the girl he loves back, no matter what it takes.

Grand Central Publishing has just acquired the rights to the Ella and Micha trilogy by Jessica Sorensen.  I'll be reading this one soon.    Can't wait to get started on it!

Nineteen-year-old Cheyenne tries to portray the perfect life to mask the memories of her past. Walking in on her boyfriend with another woman her freshman year in college threatens that picture of perfection.

Twenty-one-year-old Colt never wanted college and never expected to amount to anything, but when his mom's dying wish is for him to get his degree, he has no choice but to pretend it's what he wants too.

Cheyenne needs a fake boyfriend to get back at her ex and Colt needs cash to take care of his mom, so they strike a deal that helps them both. But what if Cheyenne’s past isn’t what she thought? Soon they’re trading one charade for another—losing themselves in each other to forget about their pain. The more they play their game, the more it becomes the only thing they have that feels real.

Both Cheyenne and Colt know life is never easy, but neither of them expect the tragedy that threatens to end their charade and rip them apart forever. 


Nyrae Dawn's Charade has a great premise and a ton of potential, but unfortunately, even with these positives, it didn't turn out to be a great read for me.  You'll see why when I review it on Thursday.  Maybe I'm getting a little tired of all this NA already!   I'm sure t his one will be loved by many, though - it's got great ratings on Goodreads and is storming up the Self-Pubbed Best-Seller's charts!

 And There's More!

If that not enough to whet your NA appetite, here are some more New Adult resources where you can find many more NA books to read!

NA Alley - A blog dedicated to all things New Adult 
Galley Cat - Self Published Bestsellers - Keep up to date with what's hot in Self-Publishing & NA.

If you are a blogger who has a feature dedicated to New Adult link it in comments, and I'll add it to this post!

What's next for NA?

All of the books I've mentioned above were originally Self-Published, but the majority have now been snapped up by major publishers, hungry to capitalize on the success of these Self-Published best sellers.  Self-Publishing might be responsible for bringing the New Adult college years to the masses, but that looks set to change. 

Next year sees the release of Beginner's Luck, the first in the Union Street (a.k.a. Brooklyn Girls as per Goodreads) series from Gemma Burgess.  Beginner's Luck follows five girls sharing a house in Brooklyn after graduation.  Sounds like a lot of fun and is sure to appeal to fans of Lena Dunham's Girls. Releasing from St. Martin's Griffin in July 2013.

Fantastically funny, fresh and utterly relatable,Beginner’s Luck by Gemma Burgess is the first novel in her brand new series UNION STREET about five twenty-something friends – Pia, Angie, Julia, Coco and Madeleine – sharing a brownstone in hip downtown Brooklyn, and discovering the ups, downs, ins and outs of adult life.

The first book is Pia’s story. She’s sophisticated, spoilt, and stylish… and unemployed, unemployable, and broke. So what is a recent grad with an art history degree and an unfortunate history of Facebook topless photos to do? Start a food truck business, of course! Pia takes on the surprisingly cutthroat Brooklyn world of hybrid lettuce growers and starts SkinnyWheels - all while dealing with hipster bees, one-night-stands, heartbreak, parental fury, wild parties, revenge, jail, loan sharks, playboys, karaoke, true love, and one adorable pink food truck. And that’s without counting her roommates’ problems, too…

Gemma Burgess has captured the confusion, hilarity and excitement of the post-graduate years against a backdrop of the pressures and chaos of New York City life, with heartfelt empathy, fast humor and sharp honesty.Union Street is your next favourite book series.


If contemporary romance is not your thing, then you might be thinking New Adult is not for you - and er, you're probably not reading this post! So far NA's primary focus has been on romance, but Shannon Stoker's The Registry indicates that NA might just be about to spread its wings:

Shannon Stoker's "new adult" debut THE REGISTRY, set in a United States in which girls are breeders and the prettiest girls go to the highest bidders -- telling the story of the one young woman who refuses to play by those rules, to Amanda Bergeron for William Morrow, in a six-figure deal, in a three-book deal, for publication in 2013, with books two and three to follow in 2014, by Paula Munier in her first deal as an agent, at Talcott Notch Literary Services.

What About New Adult Fiction set in the UK? A little UKNA? 

Er, that doesn't have quite the same ring to it as UKYA, but yes, UK publishers have picked up on the popularity of the 'New Adult' genre with Simon & Schuster (Beautiful Disaster by Jennifer McGuire, The Sea Breeze series by Abbi Glines) Penguin (Easy by Tammara Webber) and Hot Key Books (The Vincent Boys by Abbi Glines) all getting in on the act, but that's not UKNA you say! I know! I'm getting to that!

Piccadilly Press has acquired Irresistible by Liz Bankes, pitched as a passionate 'steamy' - Irresistible is described as a 'Fifty Shades...' for the younger reader. 

I've read the first chapter of Irresistible and I'm hooked already! You can check it out: here

Irresistible by Liz Bankes will release in eBook in December 2012 and Paperback in April 2013. 

Some games go too far.

When Mia gets a job in a posh health/country club during her gap year, she is strikes up a friendship with the laconic and funny Dan. Dan is also working in the club and keeps Mia amused. However, she soon finds herself drawn to the wealthy bad boy, Jamie. Jamie is the beautiful and privileged Cleo’s boyfriend. Mia knows that her relationship with Jamie is wrong, but there’s something so dangerously exciting about Jamie that she just can’t stop.

Irresistible heralds a new genre of passionate romance that is setting adolescent hearts racing. ‘Steamies’: it’s not about what they do, but how it makes her feel!

You might also like to check out the Girl Heart Boy series by Ali Cronin.  This has been published in the UK as YA, but it really fits the New Adult Genre. 

 That's my New Adult round-up guys! If you have any 'New Adult' titles you'd like to recommend or any thoughts to share on the article, then tell me all in comments!

Note: You might wonder why I omitted  On Dublin Street  by Samantha Young from my list.  It is an amazing read, after all! Yes it is, but it's not New Adult! I've seen On Dublin Street mentioned in New Adult discussions quite a lot, but ODS is most definitely Adult Fiction, and not NA, as the author herself has pointed out: here.

Sources:  Publishers Weekly, The Bookseller, Press Releases, Goodreads, Galley Cat. Note: Covers may not be final and may be subject to change.


  1. I started noticing NA when Beautiful Disaster and Slammed started taking center stage.  I wasn't sure what it was and a blogger friend of mine tried to explain it to me.  I am just now starting to see eldelweiss treeline have more books available for review in this category.  Nice explanation and selection above.

  2. Heather@The Flyleaf Review20 November 2012 at 19:17

    Oh, you KNOW I love NA and this post, Leanna! Loved Slammed, loved Losing It, loved Easy. And thanks for the other rec's that I haven't read yet!

    So I have another for you to add to your list of NA releases next year: Just One Day by Gayle Forman. I finished it last night and I have to say, it is the absolute best example of a New Adult novel I have ever read. EVER. It captures perfectly that time you speak of, that time after high school when a young person has new found independence and is trying to define themselves in their own terms (as opposed to their parent's definition.) Best Forman book I have read yet:)

    Great post! Love it!

  3. Truly amazing how this has become the hottest genre in publishing!

  4.  Thanks, Heather! If you haven't read Taking Chances, I'd recommend it.  Of all the NA I've read, that one is my fave so far. I also need to read Slammed soon! I can't wait to read Just One Day - it's top of my wish list for next year. I read a sampler and loved it, but unfortunately my Edelweiss request was declined, so I have to wait until January to read the rest!

  5.  I know! It's very hot right now!

  6. caroline.taylor07820 November 2012 at 20:20

    Interesting post, I haven't read any NA books but I am getting a Kindle for Christmas and will probably download Easy and The Vincent Boys and go from there if I enjoy them.

  7. Heather@The Flyleaf Review20 November 2012 at 20:26

    I loved Slammed. Of the three I mentioned (excluding Just One Day) it is my favorite:) The poetry in it is awesome!

  8.  The film rights have been optioned too so we might be seeing it on the big screen! :)

  9.  I must read The Vincent Boys soon too. I've heard lots of good things. I enjoyed Easy - it's not a total fave of mine but I know a lot of people who really love it!

  10. I absolutely love the new adult genre. It's something fresh and exciting so I'm all for it! :)

  11. Great Post!!! I am a huge fan of New Adult books but I have to agree, the formula seems all the same on many books! Still, I do enjoy this theme although I fear it might fast get tiring! What I love it seeing all this success of Indie's Authors that are not being aquired by big publishers!! Makes me super happy and yes Publishers FINALLY realize the potential awesomeness of these books! 

  12.  Yeah, a lot of the books I've been reading have definitely followed a formula.  I wonder if NA will fizzle out because of this or if people will start mixing things up to give it longevity. We'll see!

  13. I am really liking NA, especially after reading Taking Chances and Easy. I just finished Easy a few days ago! I should pick up a copy of Beautiful Disasters and Slammed. I want to read Vincent Boys too, especially after reading your post about it.  Thanks for this informative post, Leanna!

  14. Hmm I'm not really a fan of the "NA" books I've read but I understand its appeal. People who are into are REALLY into it. 

  15. I happen to be a fan of the bad boys too Leanna, so I'm not complaining that they often seem to be the focus of NA books! Bring more of them on:) I adored Easy, it just blew me away, and I've heard great things about Slammed so I think that's going to be next on my list. I'm loving that this is becoming its own genre and really taking hold!

  16. Stina Lindenblatt21 November 2012 at 17:09

    I discovered NA just before NYC did. I'm looking forward to more of your NA reviews. Although I've read some amazing SP'ed NA books, I'm still leery of ending up with a poorly edited one. 

  17. Oh wow! I just done my own post on this topic namely because I was looking for some more New Adult recommendations and then I click on your blog and I have a whole list full! Thank you so much for this post. I haven't read any NA yet but can't wait to :)

  18. I just think that right now it works and everyone is writing it, but at some point they have to reach out and explore more! YA is also not just about one forumla. Btw, I just read a NA Alien story! Loved the premise :) 

  19.  What book is that? I don't think I've heard of a NA alien story -- sounds like something new and different!

  20. Thank you so much for this post! I only recently heard about NA and I've been so curious! Your post has answered some questions I've had, and I am SO looking forward to reading NA in future! 

  21.  Yeah, it's taken off like crazy in the last few months.  I haven't read a 5/5 NA book yet, but I have read some that are pretty good, and some that are really just okay.

  22.  I've heard great things about Slammed. Really need to read that one soon too!

  23. I'd be happy to answer any of your NA questions (if I can!)


Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. I really appreciate it!

If you are a book blogger and have taken the time to comment, I will make sure to come visit your blog and return the favour. :)

Please note: This blog is now an award free zone. Thanks to everyone who has awarded the blog in the past.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Related Posts with Thumbnails View My Stats